Your health and hygiene should not be taken lightly, and starting with these is a step in the right direction.
By David Adewusi
If you didn’t pay 100% attention to your health in the past, there is a chance the Coronavirus pandemic of 2020 changed that. The pandemic claimed the lives of thousands; healthy men and women died after brief stints with the virus. However, as many experts would later point out, most of these deaths were as a result of underlying illnesses.
A few weeks back, I came across a Reddit post that shared helpful health tips. This post featured stories of individuals who suffered minor health issues that escalated into critical health conditions. While this initially seemed like basic tips that everyone knew about, the fact that it had saved lives caused me to see them in a different light; and I think you should too.
Here are six tips that resonated with me:
Clean Your Navels
I’m pretty sure most of us don’t pay the same attention to our navels as we do to other parts of our body. I agree that we can forget to clean them out, especially due to the fact that there aren’t so many discussions around navels. However, recent studies have proven that navel infections are in fact a thing. When dirt, bacteria, and germs are stuck in that little space, they can quickly turn into an infection, which in turn could lead to something more serious. Pro tip? Clean them out with a cotton bud at least twice a week.
Take Care of Your Teeth
Nobody likes a visit to the dentist, but you can avoid daily visits at 50 if you do the needful now. Brush your teeth at least twice daily, and floss after your meal. If you also feel the need for professional intervention, then don’t hesitate to visit the dentist. If you want to avoid dentist visits at an older age, or being unable to eat your favorite meals at a certain age, then get that toothbrush and scrub hard! Interestingly, flossing isn’t just about your teeth; recent research has shown that there is a relationship between gum diseases and heart diseases. The research adds that flossing regularly can reduce your chances of suffering a heart attack or stroke.
You should also brush your tongue regularly; asides helping with better oral hygiene, it helps eliminate bad breath.
Clean the Top of Your Ear
Let’s run a quick exercise: rub the top of your ear, the part that connects to your hair, with a finger. After doing that, put that finger to your nose and smell; does it smell bad? Or completely normal? If it smells like your soap or body lotion, then you are doing a great job. But if otherwise, this means it is a spot you should target while in the bathroom. Always scrub gently with a finger while having your bath, as this is a great spot for bacteria.
Wash Your Towels
You didn’t think I was going to mention this? Your towel isn’t supposed to hang out there for a week. Wash at least once every week, or every time you realise it’s starting to smell funny. Your towel could harbor a lot of germs, which in turn could lead to infections, rashes, eczema, or other skin conditions.
Don’t Repeat Your Underwear
This goes for both men and women; do not — for whatever reason — wear a certain underwear more than once! Change them every day, and wear them for no more than two days if you absolutely can’t change. This is extremely important as these underwear are always in close contact with our privates, meaning you stand a higher chance of getting an infection if you don’t do the right thing.
Wash Your Anus
A bit sensitive? Yes, I agree. But that is no excuse to avoid washing that spot! Using toilet paper is great, but you know what is better? Wet wipes! Every night, make it a ritual to wash that “dark” spot while taking your bath. If kept unclean, this is a home for germs that could potentially harm you, and your sexual partner.
I hope this article reminds you to adopt these basic hygiene tips once again. Your health and hygiene should not be taken lightly, and starting with these is a step in the right direction.
David Adewusi has appeared on Kalahari Review, Praxis Magazine, African Writer, and Naked Convos. Currently living in Ibadan and being forced to study in a Nigerian institution, his biggest dream is to be left alone.